Monday, April 30, 2012

2012 Decluttering - Monthly Update

For the month of April I definitely hit more than my 1 item a day declutter goal.
There was a charity pick-up for Breast Cancer Research so we put out five bags.
I haven't even listed all lot of the stuff that got decluttered!

Charity/Give away
1 purple sweater to a friend
Some magazines to a friend
Lots of books to friends
Cookbook Mexican from Puerto Vallerta - my sister
1 vase - my sister
Tiny whisk
1 coffee mug
1 trivet
3 fridge magnets
4 towels - my sister
1 Titanic special edition DVD to a friend
2 cat dishes - too big for our little guy
Small embroidery
Cleaned out 3 drawers in sewing desk and made up a box of spools of threads and other sewing materials
2 office leather portfolios
5 golf trophies (hubby's)
1 magazine holder
1 basket
Some stationery items from combining two office boxes into one.
Christmas bags

The following went to the charity pick-up on April 9 (5 bags).
Green sweatshirt - I am finally parting with it.
Purple sweatshirt - some marks
1 pair black pants - very worn
11 of hubby's golf shirts
9 of hubby's winter sweaters
2 of hubby's shirts
10 of hubby's t-shirts
3 pairs of shorts - worn
1 pair of dress shoes - too tight
1 pair of flip flops
2 pairs hubby's winter boots
1 pair brown cords
1 pair green cords
1 blue winter sweater
2 green sweaters
1 black travel purse
1 pair brown pants - they are fluff collectors
Red sweater
1 pair beige sandals

4 pairs of underwear
3 season passes to museums - expired

2 cat food saver lids
3 trips to the recycling bin with boxes from basement
Some paper coasters
I entered some more recipes into my blog - My Recipe Box and threw out the paper versions.
Old box of opened crackers - gone stale
Roasting pan - damaged
Container of homemade bread crumbs from ages ago
2 old bottles of Diet Coke - gone flat
Moved coconut from large glass jar (recycled) to container from bread crumbs above
Almost empty can of Liquid Plumber
1 non-working night light
1 very old bra - but a favourite
2 used travel toothpastes
1 Empty tin that used to store onion soup mix which I no longer buy
1 empty glass jar for storage
Cleaned out sewing desk - threw out odd buttons, pins, etc.
Manual for a slide projector that we got rid of years ago
Bunches of pins from sewing drawer, loose threads, geometry set
2 t-shirt panels
Small box
2 Spanish travel books from 1999
A pile of city/state maps from our travels
3 film canisters
Minnie Mouse wall hanging - moved from garage sale items in April.
2 souvenir framed work certificates
2 work name plates

Old buns/burgers from freezer
Can of chip shop curry
Salmon from last year
An unidentified frozen package
Reduced 1 HUGE container of dry milk (for the breadmaker) to a small container.

Garage Sale:
Crock pot - slightly chipped but works fine. It was replaced with a shiny new one that I won in the Heart and Stroke lottery.

1 small heater
8 picture frames
1 framed Italian photo
3 Montreal prints
Cat lamp
2 -Spanish instruction CD sets
2 Umbra Contact shelves - never used

Basket - from combing batteries into one central container

X box - $50
Coffee Table
TV Stand
Black futon
Sewing machine table
Dining room set
Black wooden African women heads

Running total for garage sale (this not really updated)
Green leather bound binder with blank pages, a ruler and several pockets for holding items. I used to use it to record household measurements or pictures of things I liked for the house. I took all the relvant information and updated my House spreadsheet, took some photos of some pages (old house paint colours) and tore out pages.
One curtain rod
One shower rod
Two air purifiers
Two scarves
One gold basket
Four ceramic door knobs
One hanging space saver shelf
One wicker soap dispenser
One blue serving dish
Metal cutlery tray I was using in bathroom for makeup
2 space saver shelves (from cleaning out 2 shelves in the kitchen).
Beer mug
4 photo albums that I emptied wedding photos from - they will be scanned
Theatre programs 

London slides
Cribbage game
Small storage basket - blue
2 throws from front porch
10 books
Cat dish - too big for our little guy
1 cookbook - Road Grill a
3 small Chinese cookbooks

My Recipe Box - Dumplings

love Chinese dumplings! Here is my go-to recipe.  And here are some photos of dumplings we had in China.

When we are in Hawaii, on the Big Island we always make sure we go to The Bamboo restaurant in Hawi just for their potstickers (well also everything else on their menu)!!
I even bought their cookbook. I'll post a couple of their other recipes soon.

Ground pork would be great also.

Tuesday May 1 - Copenhagen

Somehow Blogger (thank you very much) deleted all the photos I had scheduled for this post as well as the write up.
We flew out on April 30th, an hour late, at 10PM on Air Canada. flight was uneventful, the usual surly flight attendants that AC seems to attract.
Landed in Copenhagen at around noon due to the delay and the time difference is six hours. Customs was a breeze, he simply stamped your passport, no questions, no forms.
While waiting for our luggage, I could overhear the sales rep at the American Express currency exchange desk cheerfully acting as a tour guide and giving people directions into the city.
We had planned on taking the metro but he was directing people to the train. Both, by the way, immediately accessible once you pick up your luggage.
They have an easy automated machine to buy your train tickets which were around $6 each. They trains come frequently, they is plenty of room to accommodate everyone's luggage and we were in Central Station in fifteen minutes.
We stepped out of the station and Tivoli Gardens were in front of us, meaning we had to get around the gardens to get to our hotel on H.C. Andersens Blvd. We quickly realized that it was May1, a holiday, Labour Day in Europe so the Gardens were packed with families.
Once we got our bearings with our map we headed to find the hotel.  Of course, it would have been shorter if we had turned left instead of right coming out of the station.
We easily found our hotel, the Hotel Alexandra and had the most wonderful, ever, receptionist greet us. Our room, upgraded to a superior, on an impulse, is gorgeous. A corner unit, overlooking the street with three windows, one of them a bay window, called the Arne Jacobsen room and furnished with a selection of his fine furniture and textiles.

This is our room from their website!

It's Monday! What Are You Reading?

It's Monday! What are you reading? is hosted by Sheila at Book Journey. For this meme, bloggers post what they finished last week, what they're currently reading, and what they plan to start this week. 
You might also like to check out my Friday Finds highlighting new reads I discovered during last week that got added to my TBR (to be read) list over at Goodreads. 
I also posted about the Irish Book Awards shortlist and 2012 Book Pilgrimage challenge is to read a book, or books, and then visit (make a pilgrimage!) to either the location where the book is set or to the author's home (or grave). 


The Paris Vendetta (Cotton Malone, #5)
Synopsis here.
 I enjoyed it perhaps not as much as I have enjoyed Steve Berry previously. It's pretty fast paced and action
packed. I like the way that history becomes an integreal part of the story. But I must admit to glazing over
some of the Napoleon background included.

What the Body Remembers: A Novel
From the book jacket:
Out of the rich culture of India and the brutal drama of the 1947 Partition comes this lush and eloquent 
debut novel about two women married to the same man.
Roop is a young girl whose mother has died and whose father is deep in debt. So she is elated to learn 
she is to become the second wife of a wealthy Sikh landowner in a union beneficial to both. For Sardaji’s first wife, Satya, has failed to bear him children. Roop believes that she and Satya, still very much in 
residence, will be friends. But the relationship between the older and younger woman is far more 
complex. And, as India lurches toward independence, Sardarji struggles to find his place amidst the 
drastic changes. 
Well, I did stick with this mainly because we drove to Montreal for the weekend so I forced myself to finish in 
the car.
But it was a painful read. I especially skimmed over the many, many pages of Indian politics in the 1930s and 40s. 
Most of the reviews are excellent so it must only be me that ended up being exasperated with these women, I need
to remember the times and location to generate any sympathy for them. I do think being the second wife at 16 to a
in his forty's  cannot be easy. The first wife is a very smart woman, though and her husband might have been wise 
to listen to her!

I will be on vacation for the next couple of weeks so I'll catch up with everyone when I return.

2012 books read (34 to date):
The Coast Road - John Brady
Still Midnight - Denise Mina
The Bulgari Connection - Fay Weldon
Good Bait - John Harvey
The Heretic's Treasure - Scott Mariani
Dead I Well May Be - Adrian McKinty
The Devil's Elixir - Raymond Khoury
A Darker Domain - Val McDermid
The Impossible Dead - Ian Rankin
GB84 - David Peace
The Emperor's Tomb - Steve Berry
Stonehenge Legacy - Sam Christer
Inquisition - Alfredo Colitto ABANDONED!
The Troubled Man - Henning Mankell
Nineteen Seventy-Four - David Peace
Faithful Place - Tana French
Dead Like You - Peter James
Brother and Sister - Joanna Trollope
The Forgotten Garden - Kate Morton ABANDONED!
A Beginner's Guide to Acting English -Shappi Khorsandi
The Snowman - Jo Nesbo
The Leopard - Jo Nesbo
The Stone Cutter - Camilla Lackberg
Miramar - Naguib Mahfouz
The Gallow's Bird - Camilla Lackberg
Nineteen Seventy- Seven - David Peace
Timeline - Michael Crichton
Millennium People - JG Ballard
The Hunger Games - Suzanne Collins
Catching Fire - Suzanne Collins
Mockingjay - Suzanne Collins 

Birdman - Mo Hayder
Clara Callan - Richard B. Wright
The Paris Vendetta - Steve Berry

Copenhagen Weather Forecast

Sunday, April 29, 2012

Macro Monday

Macro Monday is hosted by Lisa at Lisa's Chaos.MM3

Another lion from Italy. This one was taken just to the north of the centre of Rome is the large and heart-shaped park known as the Villa Borghese. It is named after the building to which these were originally the private grounds - that building, on the eastern side of the park, now houses the impressive Galleria Borghese. Both building and grounds were handed over to the state in 1902.
All photography on this post at Junk Boat Travels are under copyright. If you would like to use any of my photographs please contact me first.

Mellow Yellow Monday


I'm posting over here  today.
Taken in Manhattan last summer.
All photography on this post at Junk Boat Travels are under copyright. If you would like to use any of my photographs please contact me first.

Flat Stanley - Montreal

So Flat Stanley went on a road trip this weekend. He went from Toronto to Montreal which is about 350 miles each way (or approx. 510 kilometres each way as can be seen in the 2nd photo).
We took his picture as we headed back to Toronto, the sign behind him shows  the direction to either Montreal (east or est in French) or Toronto (west or ouest in French).
He is resting up now for his flight tomorrow night from Toronto to Copenhagen, Denmark where he starts his European trip.

You can see the Quebec license plate on the car in front.
 Crossing the "ever under construction" Mercier Bridge
 Heading back to Toronto - we're going right.
 510 Km!! until home!

Saturday, April 28, 2012

Scenic Sunday

Scenic SundayI'm posting over here today!
Before we had our house repainted we used to have a wall of photos from our travels. We could only select one photo from each place and we had it enlarged and mounted. This was our selection from Nova Scotia from 1990.
The lupins (also known as lupines) were in bloom along side this red clay road in the middle of these rolling hills.

Friday, April 27, 2012

Saturday Snapshot

Saturday Snapshots is hosted by Alyce at At Home With Books.

Taken in Cleveland at the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame a few years ago.

All photography on this post at Junk Boat Travels are under copyright. If you would like to use any of my photographs please contact me first.

Pink Saturday

How Sweet the Sound
I'm linking up over here today.

Taken in Palm Springs at The Living Desert whose mission is Colorado desert conservation through preservation, education and appreciation. It contains animals and gardens and is a wonderful place to visit. It is best to go early in the day as it gets very hot and harder to see the animals as they rest during the warmest parts of the day.

All photography on this post at Junk Boat Travels are under copyright. If you would like to use any of my photographs please contact me first.

Thursday, April 26, 2012